• I'm a sentimental gal. When Christmas rolls around I love to pull out the Christmas ornament crafts and reminisce about each one. My boys are still in elementary school, but our tree is full of little crafts we did when they were younger. (... I can't imagine what it will look like years from now?!) I might have to get another tree!

    There's something special about Christmas tree ornaments. Maybe it's the fact that they get displayed on our tree for everyone to see. Whatever it is, I love it. I started making ornaments right after the boys were born. Each year the boys and I, together, make a new ornament. Some years the boys get a little wild and 'creative', but for the most part only one ornament gets to make it on the tree.

    I have a lot of friends that say they love making crafts but just don't have the time. Non-sense! It's very easy to take a few minutes to sit down and make something simple. Ornaments don't have to be perfect or expensive - just from the heart. Let me show you.

    Here are a few Christmas ornament crafts ideas we have done in the recent years.

        Candy Cane Frame

        Candy canes are always readily available and can be purchased in bulk very inexpensively around Christmas. Get some colorful light gauge cardboard paper, cut in a fun shape and glue the candy canes around the border. Paste your favorite Christmas photo in the middle and you have a great ornament for the tree!

        Glittery Pine Cone

        Speaking of inexpensive - try picking up some pinecones under the pine tree in your backyard and using them for a craft! Add a touch of glue to the pine cone and sprinkle it with glitter. Glue a ribbon loop to the top and hang these sparkling decorations all over.

        Christmas Print Cards

        I love these. Pint the kids hands and/or fingers and have them create colorful artwork on card stock. Add your favorite Christmas phrase and these crafts become perfect Christmas cards to send to friends and family.

        Place Mats

        If you're really ambitious, consider making the print cards slightly larger and running the final version the local printer to get laminated. In our house these personalized place mats have become treasured gems the kids get to smile about each time they sit around the dining room table.

    All of these ideas are super simple. Just go to the store and let your kids help you shop for little things. (i.e. pieces of felt, styrofoam, glitter glue, etc.) Spread everything out on the table with a few instructions and watch them create masterpieces.

    Then watch their faces light up as their ornaments get placed front and center on your Christmas tree! That's what I love about the Christmas season. I hope you enjoy it too with Christmas ornament crafts.



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  • Figural costume jewelry is such fun to collect, and animal figures are at the top of the list.

    Think of any mammal, bird, fish, insect or reptile, and you can be sure to find many pieces in many styles. Designed with rhinestones, gold, silver, enamel, precious metals and stones, lucite, bakelite and other plastics, the variety is virtually endless.

    Do you have a favorite breed of dog? There's the start to a fascinating collection! During the 1930s Scottie jewelry was a popular design, influenced by President Franklin Roosevelt's dog, Fala. In the 1950s poodle jewelry had widespread appeal. My grandma Bella wore a set of poodle scatter pins with rhinestone eyes and collars.

    Cats are very popular in figural jewelry, in both vintage and contemporary pieces. Whimsical kitties play with rhinestone balls, peek at their reflections in glass mirrors, and cuddle together in enamel baskets.

    Vintage costume figurals range from exotic animals like cheetahs, giraffes, elephants and gazelles, to gorgeous birds, fish, bees, lizards, and even crabs, lobsters, frogs and turtles. Black onyx inset into gold tone made the spots on leopards. Silvertone and rhinestones gave life to elephant jewelry. The infinite variety of bird colors came alive with the use of enamel and colored rhinestones. Lucite "jelly belly" animals included turtles, birds and fish, the rounded "bellies" forming their bodies.

    Imagine a vintage seal pin balancing a pearl or rhinestone on his nose - he's out there, and you just might find him. Picture a flamingo pin covered in pink stones, a seahorse covered in pearls, a turtle with a lucite "jelly belly" for its back. Red rhinestones make a lobster pin glow. Green enamel covers a frog's back. The infinite colors of bakelite made for stylized and animals. Lucite dolphins frolic as if under water.

    Check out estate sales, thrift shops and yard sales for the best prices, and, as always, examine every piece closely for condition of the stones or the workmanship. If you're buying for yourself, you can be a bit more lenient with flaws than if you're buying for investment.

    Whether you specialize in one type of animal jewelry, or spread the wealth around, you're sure to enjoy the hunt and capture of remarkably beautiful animal figural jewelry.



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  • timeless and fun: creating handmade beaded bracelets. Creating jewelry has become a favorite hobby of many individuals, no matter the age-old and young. From colorful, Swarovski crystals, glass beads, to expensive gemstones beads, women and men all over the country are beginning to design, and handcrafted pieces of jewelry are fully of meaning and are meant to be treasured heirlooms. This is a joyful hobby you could do forever, and it is really a wonderful hobby to do with someone else who shares the same interest.

    For thousands of years, men and women have been using all kinds of items to make beautiful accessories for themselves. This goes back to ancestors that lived thousands of years before us, used any materials they could find around them to hand create wonderful pieces of beaded jewelry that were designs to accentuate their bodies, and even gave them social status. Beaded bracelets have always been highly popular even for as long as anyone can remember, and now you have the opportunity to make your own.

    Do not feel overwhelmed or under educated-this is about you. This is about the joy of experimenting with all kinds of different materials, and figuring out something you like. If you start out with a kit that holds a variety of options as far as beads, you'll be able to mix and match and kind of try your hand at the creation of unique beaded bracelets.

    This is such a enjoyable hobby for teens-they are able to determine how the design looks, and with some help and assistance, can create their own personal jewelry that they can wear for years to come. They can make them for themselves, or create them for other people, they can even exchange them between themselves like 'best friendship' bracelets, creating bonds of friendship that are sure to last than the bracelets they created themselves. What a perfect hobby for a group of teenagers.

    Although, should you still really desire some fabulous unique jewelry, but you really do not have the time or are not into doing that sort of thing (creating and designing side,) you have no need to worry. You will find so many unique companies online that have a wonderful assortment of beaded bracelets as part of their unique handmade selections beaded jewelry. The styles today often include daring choices of sparkling crystals, unique glass beads, and beautiful pearls or gemstones, each are unique in texture and extremely colorful. When you wear these types of things you are sure to be noticed. The more unique the jewelry, the better, that is the trend these days.

     



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  • It is obvious that a diamond is the attention-grabbing aspect of a diamond ring and the next aspect that catches the eye is the prong setting. It plays a prominent function of holding a diamond tightly in the assigned space on the diamond rings. Not only that, it also helps the diamond to sparkle vibrantly by letting maximum light to pass through its setting from all sides and angles. Certain designs incorporate prong settings deliberately in order to make the diamond look bigger than its actual size by lifting the ring a bit higher from the base of the ring.

    Even though prong setting is not the only way of holding a diamond in its place, it is advantageous over other options like complex settings. The main advantage is that prongs are meant to provide more visibility of the stone as they are negligibly small in size. Another main advantage is that they are less pricey thereby lowering the diamond ring price considerably and can be created in no time with ease. Diamond rings with prong setting also enable you to clean them easily, in turn making maintenance hassle free.

    Prong setting modes and shapes are many, but are mainly chosen based on the shape and size of the diamond and the design. Four, six, eight and ten prong setting styles are the most commonly used. Fishtail, heart and double or split claw prongs can be categorized under fascinating styles. V-shaped prong styles are most often seen to hold heart, marquise, pear and princess diamonds. This is because the above mentioned types come with pointed angles and hence requiring added protection to keep them in place.

    Each prong setting is unique in its own way and their choice however depends greatly on personal desires and preferences. Diamonds get the maximum protection, exposure and visibility when you buy diamond rings with four prongs while six prongs are well suited for round shaped diamonds. Eight or ten prongs and fish tail prongs are common features of vintage or antique type diamond rings. They are a great substitute to the time-honored prong styles. Double claw types look sophisticated and are meant to improve diamond's cut including radiant, emerald, round and cushion. Rings with heart prongs appear quixotic. Prong settings can also be chosen based on the occasion and frequency of use. For instance, tall prong types are not meant for day-to-day use but meant for special occasions and events.



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  • Remember the days when butterfly clips were all the rage? Fun hair clips have always been at the forefront of fashion. Whether one is an adult, teen, or child, animal hairclips can add a lot of pizzazz to any person's style.

    For babies, an animal hair clip can be absolutely adorable. There are all sorts of animal shapes to choose from for babies. A baby hair clip may be created in the shape of an elephant, lion, or kangaroo. A whale hair piece can look cute when paired with a nautical themed baby outfit.

    Another fun idea is to mix and match animal hairclips for an outfit. Wearing a cat hair piece and dog hair piece together is a great way to jazz up any outfit.

    For teens that love quirky fashion, the more hair pieces one wears the better. Right now, accessorizing an outfit with unique pieces is a raging trend that started in Japan. There are many stylish ways to wear hair pieces in one's hair. One style is to wear one or two clips to pull back bangs. This is a stylish trend for women with short hair. Another great look is to wear an animal clip for a "half up, half down" look.

    For women in the workplace, an animal clip can be a great way to communicate a love of animals to customers. In businesses such as veterinarian offices or pet stores, this can be a great way to connect with customers. Women in these sorts of professions likely have to keep their hair tied back in a ponytail. This does not mean such women can not wear animal hair clips. These women can still add a clip to the side of a ponytail for a fun and fresh look. Whether one likes dog, cat, or lizard clips, they all look fantastic when worn this way!

    Animal hair pieces make a great gift for any occasion too. For baby showers, in particular, animal hair pieces make a great gift for the new baby or for guests at the baby shower. A cute idea is to give an animal baby hair clip with a themed gift for the new baby. If one knows a parent is doing an elephant theme for the baby in his or her room, then one may want to give an elephant themed gift. This could include a baby book on elephants, an elephant t-shirt, and a cute little elephant baby hair clip. Or, if a parent really loves lions for a baby's room, then a guest could purchase a lion hair piece, a lion baby book, and lion pair of baby shoes for the new baby.

    Animal hair pieces also make great birthday gifts for a teen with a love for unique fashion accessories. Any teen would love getting a pair of these hair pieces in the shape of her favorite animal. This can be a thoughtful way to reconnect with the teen in one's life.

    Overall, animal lovers have many options when it comes to hair pieces. The best brand to choose is the No Slippy Hair Clippy brand, which has even been purchased by celebrities like Mario Lopez. Visitors should certainly visit hairclippy.com to purchase the No Slippy Hair Clippy brand for a great product which will last for years!



    For more information on colourful acrylic beads or to purchase them online visit glitter acrylic beads today!


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